The Courage to Heal with Nurse Practitioner Julie Foster

Last night met by my endearing Anthroposophic colleagues 🙋‍♀️🙋‍♀️🙋‍♀️ who travelled to stay with me, then to wake up at 4am and travel to New York for a week of training.

One theme is to discuss the Courage 🦁 to Heal. I think it relates to…

1. What does it mean as a Healer to show up for a person to invite a space for healing to happen?

2. How can patients too have the Courage to stand in the face of anything and be brave enough to Heal?

What healing means to one person can mean something else to another. 🌸

We will cover topics for women’s health, chronic illness, and one of my favorite teachings on the Alchemy of the 7 Sacred Metals for healing. All of this in the context of holistic medicine.

Did you know that the word Anthroposophy means Human in Divine Wisdom? And furthermore the Divine Sophia (Feminine) Wisdom. Why does that matter? When we can know ourselves and be guided in such a higher force of Divine Wisdom then we may become or see our full human potential.

Anthroposophy gives me a lens to view the cosmos and all its facets for healing. We focus on what makes us healthy (salutogenesis). Out of this true healing is possible. My practice is guided in part by these approaches.

🌈🔱

– Julie Foster

 

Natural Weight Loss Tips from Pohala Clinic in Portland, Oregon

Healthy eating is a big part of any medical health plan. At Pohala Clinic, we know that weight loss is not easy, but we also know from working with thousands of clients throughout the years that certain practices do work. We asked each staff member at Pohala for a natural Weight Loss tip. We hope this helps you get started on a plan you can use for life, if weight management is a goal. The answers are as diverse as our practitioners!

 

From Julie Foster, Family Nurse Practitioner

I am not a fan of the term “Weight Loss.”  What are we losing? Where does the weight go?

I would rather ask,  ‘What can we gain by having a healthy relationship with our body, mind, and spirit?’

I encourage my patients to examine their relationship with food when exploring the idea of  a healthy body.

If we are at peace with ALL aspects of our life and we structure our days with balanced,  whole plant based foods,  we can find a natural weight that suits us.

I say this to my clients: When you crave certain foods ask yourself, ‘What am I really craving? Maybe you just need to let down, cover up, or escape something and you use food to do this. Believe me it happens for most of us.  I heard a patient tell me ‘I eat my emotions’ and another say ‘I avoid eating to control my emotions.’  We cannot use food one way or the other. Food is food. It fuels us. Period.

How can we become neutral and lighthearted about food? When I work with patients about weight loss I avoid making weight loss the goal and instead encourage patients to take a path of self discovery. Once a person can see the patterns in his or her life that are a hinderance to becoming one’s best self,  healing begins.

The rest falls into place. Then, education about nutrition can be properly applied and digested (literally).

From Malia Susee, Acupuncturist and Chinese Herbalist…

Support the Spleen and get good sleep!

In Traditional Chinese Medicine, the Spleen (I’m capitalizing it to differentiate it from our biomedically-viewed organ) is responsible for the transformation food to chi, (Qi), or useable energy, and the transportation of it this useable energy to the rest of the body. Good sleep supports a healthy metabolism, whereas sleep deprivation throws off the metabolism causes us to crave sugar. Overdoing carbohydrates and sugar causes the Spleen to get bogged down and inefficient, leading to even more carb cravings and potentially less good sleep! Prioritizing healthy sleep not only helps us use the calories we have, but helps keep unhealthy cravings at bay.

 

Vera Voss

Vera Vos, Family Nurse Practitioner

When your gut is happy, you are happy! Your gut is inhabited by gazillions of microorganisms like bacteria, viruses, protozoa and others that have a huge influence on your health and, as more and more research is showing, your happiness and weight! The kind of food you eat feeds those microorganisms and the ones that like the sugar, processed foods, bad fats, etc of the Standard American Diet (SAD) cause chronic disease, mental health issues, obesity, brain fog, fatigue, etc.

The ones that make you happy, healthy and slimmer, your allies and friends have a huge preference  for high fiber stuff like vegetables (cooked and raw), fruits, legumes, nuts/seeds, healthy whole grains (quinoa, farro, bulgur, teff, etc), fermented foods (sauerkraut, kimchi, miso, kefir, tempeh, etc) and prebiotic foods like onions, garlic and jicama. Say Bon Appetit! to your microorganisms and start including each of these food categories into your diet every day to greatly increase your allies and friends which will heal your gut and body, make you happy and motivated, and support weight loss. 

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We want you to feel supported at Pohala. Our clinicians are here to listen and help. We will come up with a weight loss, healthy eating and life balanced plan that fits into your life. If eating disorder help is needed, we have specialists who can help directly and connect you with outside services.

 

Please call our clinic to work with one of our health care professionals to create a plan for a healthy body.

Healthy Eating Strategies for Good Digestion from Paresh Shelat in Portland, Oregon

Healthy Eating Strategies for Good Digestion from Paresh Shelat, Pohala Clinic Naturopathic Physician and Acupuncturist. 
Food Hygiene: Have you ever wondered why the exact same meal, eaten at different periods of time, can cause a wide range of symptoms or no symptoms at all? 🤔 Unbeknownst to many, the state of our nervous system may directly impact our ability to digest and process food (ie Fight-Flight-Fright vs REST & DIGEST). One of the most important pieces of information I pass on to my patients revolves around the process of eating. This may be more important than the types of foods my patients consume at times.⁣

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Here are several lifestyle modifications to improve digestion WITHOUT medications or supplements 💊:⁣

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1.) Chew food in its entirety. (If that means chewing each bite of food 30 times until it turns to mush, DO IT! Or at least try).⁣

2.) Do not eat “on-the-go” or when you’re in a rush. (Your body will not properly digest food).🚗💨

3.) Eliminate or limit external stressors while consuming food (ie t.v, noisy environment, arguments or tense discussions etc).🗣🖥

4.) Try your best to cook your own food and add different spices that stimulate and prepare your body for digestion such as cumin, mustard seeds, and rosemary. 👨🏾‍🍳

5.) Apple cider vinegar before meals may aid in digestion.
To book an appointment with Dr. Shelat, please call the Pohala Clinic.

 

Chronic Pain Management with Julie Foster Nurse Practitioner in Portland, Oregon

Pohala Clinic Client Julie A. Fast talks about working with Julie Foster for chronic pain management help.

“Managing chronic pain is more than medications. It’s about lifestyle changes and helping a person find natural ways to exercise and work with the pain in order to have a functional life.” 

 

I’ve worked with nurse practitioner Julie Foster as my primary care physician in Portland, Oregon for over ten years. During this time, she has helped me through a variety of sport related injuries that eventually led to a problem with chronic pain.  With her help, I have regular body treatments from various processionals,  have worked on my diet and eventually got my pain under control.  Julie’s advice is always specific. We talk about sleep and natural treatments. We use homeopathic remedies and acupuncture and well.

 

She reminds me that what I put in my body will be reflected in how my body responds to injuries. I know this and am working on it daily.

I want to share my story with others who are looking for help with chronic pain so that they can hopefully work with Julie in finding a plan that works in all areas of life.

Chronic pain is with me daily. I know that without my own way of dealing with the ups and downs of energy I experience depending on my pain levels, I will have a tough time in life.

 

Do You Need Help with Chronic Pain? 

We all need a plan to help us get on with life, even when the pain makes it difficult to get out of bed. I consider myself half way through this journey of getting my body back to where it was before I had my biking accident. This is something I love about working with Julie Foster. She gives me time. There is no judgement when I tell her I’m still having trouble with sugar and there is always a celebration when I am able to better follow her advice. Her patience with me has allowed me to find help for chronic pain that got me out of my special anti gravity chair and back in the world.

 

Julie taught me that chronic pain can have a life of its own. I need to be aware of what is real in my body and what is being created by my overloaded brain.  Julie often says, “The body and mind often trade off. The mind gives us trouble and when we have this figured out, the body then sends us a message that there is still more work to do. Eventually, balance happens when the mind and the body are healthy at the same time.”

 

This is my goal. Julie allows me to be human.  When I am not able to follow the diet in a way that I know will help, she reminds me that the next day is another chance to make better choices. This has allowed me to learn more about what I need. My weight has stabilized and I am now working on finding an eating plan that helps with the pain in general. This includes the following:

 

  1. Night shades such as tomatoes and chili peppers cause an immediate flare in my body. Stopping my favorite Mexican and Thai dishes has not been easy, but for now, I am very conscious of my night shade intake and it is helping greatly.

2. Movement. Chronic pains tells us that we can’t move. This is rarely the case. Even someone like myself with multiple injuries can move.

3.  White sugar.  Julie once said to me, “Julie, the fat that is created on the body from sugar consumption becomes its own organ. It can become yet another source of pain.”  When I am free from white sugar, even for a week, my pain levels go down greatly.

4. Medication pain management.  My goal is to be pain medication free.  To do this, I continue to work with Julie and the other practitioners in my life who are helping me change my diet and work on my specific injuries.

Without Julie, this would be too overwhelming. With her, I am reminded that I can get my body healthy again. It takes a team and Julie is an important part of that team.

 

 

Julie A. Fast

 

To book a time with Julie Foster or one of our Pohala Practitioners, please call the Pohala Clinic and let the receptionist know that Julie A. Fast referred you!

 

Food and the Sacred by Julie Foster, Nurse Practitioner at Pohala Clinic

 

🍎FOOD and the SACRED🍑

 

The HUMAN of the future will approach plants that are of use to them consciously; not as now when one reflects on what yields the best substances for one’s body; one will then have a vital relationship to every plant, for they will know what it is has absorbed, and what passes from food to them. Eating will not be to one as a means occupation, but an act consummated with SOUL and SPIRIT for one will know that everything they eat is the external form of something SPIRITUAL 💮

In our immediate age, when HUMANS know little about the vital inward relations between themselves and the world, all kinds of substitutes are made use of. Why have the Initiates of all ages urged people to say grace before eating? The grace should be a token of the recognition that, together with the food, something SPIRITUAL enters into HUMAN.

Rudolf Steiner – GA 105 –Universe, Earth and Man – Lecture III – Stuttgart, 6th August 1908

(I changed  the gender pronoun MAN to HUMAN- as Steiner meant this with his original use of the word man.)

Portland Family Nurse Practitioner Vera Vos on Science, Medicine and Spirituality

Vera Voss

Vera Vos, a family nurse practitioner at Pohala Clinic talks about the intersection between spirituality and medicine. 

I am passionate about science. I love how science requires us to be rational and unbiased and I am always amazed how perfect science is, like the symmetry of shapes that repeat themselves in patterns in animals, plants, and the landscape. The language of science is mathematics and when we can figure out the right numbers, so much is explained. At the same time I value my spiritual side. We think that science and spirituality are divergent but most often they come full circle to join each other.

I did a course in mind body medicine at Harvard with Herbert Benson, one of the pioneer researchers to discover the physiological benefits of meditation. Since that time, I have had my own meditation practice. This practice helps me listen better and empathize with others.

I think my love and respect for science coupled with a practice that requires me to stop judging, valuing and, essentially, thinking and just be in the moment helps me gain a deeper understanding of my clients physically, emotionally and spiritually.

Please visit our Pohala Clinic contact page to book an appointment with Dr. Vera Vos.

Eating Disorder Help in Portland, Oregon with Nurse Practitioner Julie Foster of Pohala Clinic

Many of you know how my daughter was over-trained as an gymnast and ended up grossly underweight (BMI 14.5). Within a few months already thin she grew 3′ and did not gain weight. This is called the Female Athlete Triad:

  1. No Menses
  2. Tiredness
  3. Less intake than expended

Over the years I have educated myself, treated and coordinated care as a primary care physician with local eating disordered clinics, nutritionists, mental health providers. How humbling that I would have it happen to me even as a thoughtful vigilant medical provider.

My daughter’s experience brought a very personal eating disorder awareness to my practice I would not have had otherwise. I would like to share my journey with you to let you know that I am here to help all members of the family who want to find balance around food and a healthy body.

Eating Disorder Behavior in My Family

I realized that disordered eating and thinking is not as overt as what I had thought in the past.  As a result, I painstakingly reviewed my relationship and family history with food throughout my life. I realized that both my mother and father had eating disorders as well as other members in my family.  In order to be present to the needs of my daughter, I also had to look at my own relationship with food. 

I was naturally skinny most of my life, often accused of being anorexic when I was a competitive runner. I became a nurse, health conscious, and have bordered on orthorexia (an obsession with healthy eating) with good intentions. I personally was frightened to have gained 80# with my 1st pregnancy and wondered if I would ever lose it. Four years ago as I grieved my grandfather’s death, I found myself severely iron deficient with heavy menses. I was so fatigued, I stopped running.

Simultaneously we worked to re-feed my daughter. Her stomach had shrunk so much it could take over an hour to finish a meal. I sat with her and ate more as I worried about her eating.  It was then that I realized I binge eat myself and had been covering it up with my running. I live with social or personal anxiety and without the running to deal with this as well, I turned to food and gained 15 pounds.

 I felt my thinking pulled on a track of craving food. There is a positive outcome here. With the help of my counselor, naturopath, mindfulness, & self kindness…. balance returned. Compassion for myself and our society for what we face in our times has helped me find compassion around my own eating. 

What I Have Learned

1. It is not simply the parents fault (old theories blamed the mother) when a child has an eating disorder. Epigenetics play a role, like a flipping of switch. 
2. Be suspicious of weight loss in any child. 
3. What we say to children about food and bodies can trigger an Eating Disorder such as binge eating disorder. Teachers should never make a chart of students weight and BMI for others to see. 
4. Once an Eating Disorder such as anorexia is in place it creates a state of mind that cannot change unless the person is re-fed with real food, correction of brain chemistry.
5. Striving to be healthy can lead to an extreme, as an illness.  This is called orthorexia and is often referred to as an obsession with clean eating. 
6. With the right help Eating Disorders can be HEALED.

Vera Vos family nurse practitioner and myself excel in recognizing and supporting patients with Eating Disorders, present and past. If you want a provider who is conscious with their approach in words and deeds,  we are here.

Visit our Pohala Clinic contact page to make an appointment.

Julie Foster